Mount Perkins is an often-viewed peak but rarely climbed due (probably) to lack of information and a confusing roadnet leading to the base. Located in northwest Arizona about 40 miles northwest of Kingman, Mt. Perkins is the prominent mountain set about 6 air-miles west of US-93, roughly abeam of the more well-known Mount Tipton to the east. Its east-facing slopes overlook the long Detrital Valley on which US-93 sits - the main route from Kingman to Las Vegas via Hoover Dam, while its west-facing slopes drop over 4,000 vertical feet to overlook the mighty Colorado River and the vast Mojave Desert landscape.
Mount Perkins and its foothills are the site of many mines, both old and some that seem to be currently worked by weekend miners. Naturally, be careful around these open pits.
Mount Perkins amid January snow.
From Kingman head north on US-93 about 45 miles to a large set of powerlines just north of milepost 31. These powerlines cross US-93 perpendicularly and are very obvious. Find a very discreet wire gate directly below the powerlines
on the west side of the highway. Note: If driving on northbound US-93, you'll need to ease onto a crossover on the dirt median, then cross the southbound lanes.
Pass through the gate, closing it behind you and travel west along the powerline access road for 1.8 miles just past a slight jog in the road to another fenceline. Pass the opening (the gate is laying off to the side in the brush) and turn left, now heading south. At 3.9 miles from US-93, stay left at a Y-junction. Otherwise, just proceed south along the dirt road, always staying on the main route which will be obvious. Pay attention to other roads that meet this road so that you don't get confused when driving out. The road passes a recent burn and also some mining claims that are marked off by sticks/cairns.
About 8 miles from US-93, the road starts a steep ascent toward some radio towers. The last 1/2 mile gets kind of steep. I chose to park about a half-mile short of the towers at elevation 4,400 feet.
The road is rocky and sandy in spots but generally pretty good - in fact I though it was better and smoother the farther I drove in. 4-wheel drive is not necessary, but high-clearance is. A low-slung vehicle might get high-centered on some parts of the road. Allow about 45 minutes to drive in from US-93.
If it is raining, give the peak the roads a miss since the road crosses a number of arroyos that could get swollen with flash flood waters or hopelessly boggy and goopy.
There are no restrictive signs anywhere. I did see a sign about staying away from open mines. I happened to meet an Arizona Game & Fish biologist out checking for bighorn and she said the public is welcome, although she said I was the first person she'd ever seen up here, which I guess underscores the lack of visitation.
The summit logs had no signatures for all of 2007, and no more than a few each year dating back to 1980, and the booklet(s) were only half-filled. The most recent visitors prior to my visit (Jan 2008) were some Mohave Sheriff's employees who helicoptered to the top to check the repeater box in Sept 2006.
Some good spots can be found along the road up to about the 6-mile point at which time the canyons narrow and steepen. There is no developed camping nearby. Kingman has some scary but cheap hotels along US-93, and some better options closer into town.
My report at www.surgent.net: Mount Perkins, Jan 2008